As part of the continuing, half a century long hangover that economies, industries, governments and individuals are experiencing as a result of the collapse of the Industrial Revolution and the ushering in of the Idea Age, humanity still longs for “bigness.”

  • Big profits.
  • Big mergers and acquisitions.
  • Big Data.

The current collective panting that everyone from Wall Street wizards to social scientists are doing about Big Data—and the collection of every bit of information that platforms can get about customer and client preferences—reveals two disturbing, collective beliefs that will have wide ranging implications if not checked:

  1. The first implication is that of our collective belief that bigger is somehow better, more secure and safer. With the number of incumbent bad actors (i.e. hackers, criminals, black hat actors, etc) looking to take advantage of the inherent security flaws in the collection of Big Data—not to mention the flaws inherent in size itself—this idea should die a quick death.
  2. The second implication is less talked about but is just as important: What happens when everything gets bigger but the human heart shrinks? The collecting of every possible piece of data on people’s actions, choices and preferences and the storage and manipulation of that data, can only inevitable lead to more conflict, not less.

The coming era of connected physical items to a virtual world, provides us another opportunity to address these implications and answer these questions. In the Industrial era that we are rapidly leaving behind, “bigness” was the way that things got done in the most effective way possible.

But now, in an era of decentralization and disruption, the human heart—and it’s size—must be considered more carefully.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT:

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